With events like COVID-19 taking over 2020, eCommerce has never been more important. Since we’re stuck practicing social distancing, we need a way to buy our favorite products and necessities. You’ve probably noticed that your local grocery store has introduced curbside pickup and online ordering? ECommerce is slowly becoming the standard, with millions of people switching in the last decade to doing the majority of their shopping online.
If you’re looking to build a profitable eCommerce business this year, you’ve come to the right place. Here, you’ll find the keys you need to unlock success in a completely online space. We’ll look at examples of successful sites like https://blackbuffalo.com/ and explore the path to a profitable business.
Start With An Idea
Every business starts with an idea. Your ideas can change the world on a small or large scale, help provide employment for people in your area, and innovate the industry you’re working in. This is where it all starts; but what makes a good business idea?
Your idea should solve a problem above all else. Customers look to businesses to solve their problems, and your products and services should solve at least one of your customers’ biggest problems. Maybe your audience is lacking quality, affordable clothing. Maybe they’re lacking alternatives to cigarettes. Maybe they just want a business that truly puts its customers first. Either way, you need to figure out what problem(s) you’re going to solve.
An idea should excite you as well. Passion is a huge part of the business idea because it provides you with motivation in your darkest, most difficult moments. You will experience setbacks, failures, and mistakes on your journey, and that’s ok. Remember the passion that brought you to where you are. Own that passion. Make it your greatest ally and your oldest friend.
A Good Website Today, Profits Tomorrow
In the beginning, many eCommerce businesses skimp on their websites. Why? Because building a good website is expensive, and there are plenty of free website builders out there that are just as good, right? Wrong.
Free website builders are excellent tools, don’t get me wrong; but if you want to build a profitable eCommerce business, you must invest in your website first. Put up the money to build a functional, aesthetically-pleasing site that’s easy to navigate, appealing, and keeps your potential customers interested. If your site functions poorly or looks like it was made in high school web development classes, you can’t expect to keep a customer’s attention.
This may be a significant portion of your startup costs, but in the end, it’s worth it. The right website can literally mean the difference between a successful, profitable eCommerce experience, and a failure.
The quality of your products or services should be a top priority. Otherwise, you won’t stand out among your competitors, and you’ll be just another business reaching for the same customer base. Why should anyone buy your products if you don’t even put pride in their creation? You should take pride in what you create, and make quality the standard for your brand.
Setting a higher standard helps set you apart. Customers will come to expect your brand to provide high-quality services or products, and when you deliver on that promise, they’re more likely to recommend those products to others. Word of mouth is still one of the most effective ways to market your brand, so you want to be certain that you’re making an impact.
Take SEO Seriously
ECommerce businesses should take their SEO, or search engine optimization, very seriously. All websites need some form of SEO in order to rank in search engines like Google, but if you expect to make a living from eCommerce, SEO should be your life’s blood.
SEO can help you get into that coveted first page of search results on Google. When you rank on the first 1-3 pages of Google, you’re doubling the chances that someone will click on your site. Once they’re on your site, all you have to do is make a good enough impression that they buy your products.
Don’t neglect SEO. If you need to hire an outside company to assist you, do so. It’s worth the investment to rank higher in search results.
Keep The Customers In Mind
Too many businesses put profits before customers, and this is a good way to drive your business into the ground. Always remember that your business should revolve around the customers, not the other way around. You have a responsibility to your customers to provide high-quality products and services for reasonable prices.
Companies that pay attention to their customers’ needs will outlast competitors that don’t make the same commitment. The customer decides whether your brand lives or dies, so treat them well and make decisions that are in their best interest.